Chicago Bulls rookie Wendell Carter Jr. underwent surgery to repair the ulnar collateral ligament on his left thumb and is expected to miss eight-to-12 weeks, the team announced on Monday.
The team's hand specialists examined Carter on Friday and recommended the procedure.
Ex-Bull Joakim Noah tried to play through a similar injury during the 2010-11 season before ultimately opting for surgery and missing two months, according to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune.
The 19-year-old Carter suffered the injury in Tuesday's loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. He's averaging 10.3 points, 7.0 boards, and 1.3 blocks through 44 games played.
Carter's potential absence won't stop the Bulls shopping center Robin Lopez and his expiring contract, league sources told ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.